Grateful Dead Live at The Spectrum on 1981-05-02
flac16; 2 Nak 300 shotguns > Sony TC-D5M > Maxell XLIIS tape. (Jeff Silberman's guns on Howard Shame's bodies); Sony D5 > UA5 > IBM R40/Win XP Pro/Sound Forge 5.0/CDR > EAC > WinXP Pro > FLAC Frontend > FLAC16; Taped, transferred: Doug Mow; CD> FLAC by Alex Ford
Subject: Tape Source
I drove down from upstate NY with a new rig. This is the first show for my brandy new D5. I borrowed Howard Shames's Nak 300's and his mic stand. Howard is Kenny Shames twin brother, who was a massive tape guy in upstate NY in the 70's.
I was in the first or second row behind the board. As you know, this would later become the tapers' section but at this time, it did not have a name. This was the first show of 9 for me this tour and with the new rig, I was doing a little experimenting. Part way through the Jack-Sugar-ElP opener, Jeff Silberman came up to me (never met the guy prior) and offered me his shotgun tips. I said what the heck. Now the details.
I switched the tips between ElP and Bird Song. One can hear the difference in sound immediately at the beginning of Bird Song. You will also notice that the levels of Bird Song are a little high to start and the tape is saturated. That's because I was looking up admiring the rig with the new guns at the start of the song. By the time I looked down, the VU's were pinned. I did not anticipate the fact that the guns would be hotter. I scrambled to reset the levels. The original tape is worse as I tried to even it out in the transfer.
I also tested the tape. The first set was done with Maxell XLII. Scarlet-Fire and the encore are done with Maxell XLIIS. The bulk of the second set is done with Maxell MX metal. Listen closely and you will hear the difference. I would drop XLII and go with XLIIS or MX for the rest of the tour. I would also go with the guns (better to my ear) whenever I met up with Jeff the rest of that tour.
Jeff and I would collaborate again at Glens Falls, New Haven and Cornell. My masters from Nassau, and Syracuse that tour are done with normal caps.
I just happened to come here on the eve of the 33rd anniversary of the show and saw your post. I thought I would clarify for you.
Thanks for listening and thanks to all for the praise and high marks. It was fun to do.
Subject: This Nak 300 Shotgun AUD Sounds a Little Better.
From listening to the other Wise source first, which is also very good, the first set has everything one would want for a five star blowout; with Jerry's spirited noodling adding a lot of color in the jams. It is solid with a hot Promished Land to finish up. The opening of the second is excellent, with a blazing Scarlet > Fire (though having listened to it a few times now, this recording seems to be just a touch fast. But having seen a maniacal Indianapolis show on 12.5.81, this could be actual speed. Hey Alex. Any thoughts on that?) They were smokin' right thru NFA.
But I am always disappointed seeing R&R, and OMSN played on the same night. They are my least favorite songs next to China Doll's energy sapping #1, and I swore I would never give five stars to any show with those two Dead-enders. But that's just me. That's my only beef. So this judge deducts .5 for a wobble and misstep. Maybe Bertha > Good Lovin' and I'd hold my nose and give five stars if OMSN has to be the Encore. How 'bout something unusual Guyz, like Franklin's? Or a Casey E. Or just a plain ol' perfunctory U.S. Blues at the end. They came sooo close. It would have been an easy five stars otherwise just from the intensity alone. I love 1976's creative recklessness too much to let The Boyz slide on this one.
Hey, what can I say folks. I've been spoiled rotten by this wonderful windfall of incredible AUDs from LAMA. Being a tiedyed fanatic, it's tough trying to limit my fours and fives. I have to keep telling myself - "lust is blind and three is an average... three is an average... three is..."
Well jez. To me, the "average" show is fabulous! Especially any average show before Jerry went downhill in the mid '80s -- and any average FOB being better than, say, 100% of everything else played live in the history of Rock & Roll (well maybe.) But I digress. Besides. In six months, three more reviews may swamp my miserly four and a half stars anyway. Yes, it's a definite download... And ya better get it before it becomes unavailable.
Gezuz H. Kryst. I've listened to this damned thing five time today, revising this frickin' stupid review for the twentieth time. I can't fight the X Factor any more. The Guyz are on fire tonight and this show smokes from top to bottom. Even R&R rips. I think it's the best one I have ever heard. And that's pretty tough for me to admit. I give up. This Philly show is five stars. But I'll never give it to another show with R&R and OMSN again! Yeah, who am I kidding?
Subject: Taper's Name
Subject: Great New Minglewood !
Subject: Awesome show
Subject: "soon you will not hear his voice"
Subject: A Fun Listen
Subject: Divine intervention, indeed
After El Paso, Bobby says, "Perhaps we should all join in a silent prayer for the 76ers in their upcoming contest. Looks like they're gonna need divine intervention." I looked up the situation (yeah, too much time on my hands) and it turns out the Sixers had lost Game 6 of the Conference finals to the Celtics the night before on that very floor, blowing a 3-1 series lead. The night after this show, they lost Game 7 in Boston as Larry Bird went nuts in the final quarter, pulling up for a bank shot that won the game (and the series) in the last minute. The Celtics went on to win the NBA title that year, while the Sixers had to wait til '83 for theirs (the last championship by a Philly team, as of this writing).
So what song did they do after Bobby's little prayer request? Birdsong, of course. More like a curse than a prayer, I think. Another typical twist of Dead happenstance, or maybe a nod to their buddy Walton (a Celtic at the time, I believe).
Anyway, it's a good listen, and a fine Birdsong despite its negative connotations for us Philly fans (and Bird-haters)- but not quite the one we heard in Maryland on 3/7/81 - wow, that was a doozy.
Subject: Sweet mix ...
Subject: Definite Upgrade
PS- the reviewer below gave this 4 stars after only listening to the 1st few notes of track 01?
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